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Back in The Eighties, there was a cartoon about two warring factions of Transforming Mecha alien robots who used (then) contemporary Earth as their battleground.

No we're not talking about The Transformers. Hanna-Barbera produced the less successful Challenge of the Go Bots.

Written and drawn solely by Tom Scioli, Go-Bots, released to mark the brand's 35th anniversary, marks the first official Continuity Reboot of the Go Bots franchise since The Eighties, beyond Facebook Q&As done by the Transformers brand. Significantly Darker and Edgier than its predecessors, it radically reimagines the Go-Bots and their adventures.
Tropes used in Go-Bots include:
  • Adaptation Species Change:
    • Rather than Brain In a Jar alien cyborgs, the Go-Bots are human built machines.
    • The Command Centers were starships in the cartoon. Here they're suggested to be a race of naturally occurring Gobotronian wildlife.
    • The Rock Lords are the intelligent descendants of humanity rather than an alien race.
  • Adaptational Badass: Zod. While he was always a badass, he was a Renegade built Humongous Mecha in the cartoon. Here's he's a near Eldritch Abomination.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Bug Bite. He was a Smug Snake in the cartoon but here, even though he did gun down a diner, is a good guy and acts as Road Ranger's Number Two.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Leader-1. In the original cartoon, he was The Cape. Here he's a ruthless tyrant that casually brainwashes people to enforce his despotic rule. His rivalry with Cy-Kill is Evil Versus Evil.
  • Adapted Out:
    • The Master Renegade and the Last Engineer.
    • The rest of the Monster GoBots. Vamp is the only one.
  • Aliens Steal Cable: The human astronauts initially theorize that this is why Gobotron mimics Earth culture.
  • Anachronism Stew: The comic opens in contemporary 2018 and features the Go-Bots as a relatively new technology, certainly limited to only the first world. The main characters, however, all have their '80s alternate modes (Leader-1 is an F-15, Turbo is an F40 Ferrari (or close enough), Zeemon is a Datsun 280Z, and Cy-Kill stills turns into a retro-futuristic bike) but some background characters have more modern alternate modes such as a Mercedes-Benz AMG GT or a Chrysler 300.
  • Ascended Extra: Spay-C.
  • Big Bad: If not Leader-1 himself, then definitely Zod.
  • Big Bad Wannabe:
    • Dr. Braxis. If not for his Vamp army, no one would have payed him any attention.
    • To a certain extent Cy-Kill. While Cy-Kill is a clear threat, it's clear that Leader-1 barely pays any attention to him. The final issue reveals that Leader-1 has captured Cy-Kill countless times, wiped his mind, and then set him free again. Seemingly just For the Evulz.
  • Black and White Morality: Turbo.
  • Composite Character: Well Composite Location. Earth, Gobotron, and Quartex were separate planets in the cartoon. Here, the shattered remnant of Earth fills in for Old Gobotron and Quartex is but a region on Earth that the Rock Lords inhabit.
  • Crapsaccharine World: Gobotron. Discounting Zod, everything seems fine and prosperous but only because Leader-1 enforces a horrifically brutal and corrupt reign.
  • Death by Adaptation: All three human friends are dead by Issue 3. Justified given the Time Skip.
  • Decomposite Character: In the cartoon, there was only one Vamp. Here there's an army of Vamps.
  • Earth All Along: As the humans discover at the end of Issue 3, Gobotron was built around the shattered remnants of an organic planet. Earth.
  • Fatal Flaw: Turbo's is his Undying Loyalty. He stubbornly sticks by the human race no matter what, even as everyone else has moved on and can't give any shits about their creators, and utterly refuses to abandon Scooter. The second really backfires as it resulted in Scooter being irreparably brain damaged. By the end, it's clear that Turbo's stubborn refusal to change has left him an outsider on both Earth and Gobotron.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Issue 3 is hugely unsubtle in saying that Road Ranger will take over Gobotron.
    • Spay-C clearly knows something is wrong when he arrives on Gobotron, constantly cursing himself for withholding the secret from his human friends. His secret? Gobotron is Earth.
    • A few Transformers references are made throughout the story (such as Road Ranger ordering his troops to "transform and roll-out" and Bug Bite having a Bumblebee-like head). Then the ending heavily implies that, under Road Ranger's leadership, Gobotron will evolve into Cybertron.
  • Freudian Excuse: Go-Bots were built to serve man. Cy-Kill was built to serve other Go-Bots as a motorcycle.
  • Gretzky Has the Ball: Turbo, despite turning into a European sports car, competes in stock car races.
  • Happiness in Slavery: Turbo and Scooter, even in the midst of the Robot War, ask Leader-1 to send the Go-Bots back into bondage. Unsurprisingly, they're exiles once the Go-Bots take over.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: What caused the Renegades to rise up against humanity. They were treated like total crap. As Screw Head said, "Our [Go-Bots] lives mean nothing to them [humans]. Our deaths even less."
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Turbo is ultimately the one responsible for Scooter's damaged mind.
  • One-Gender Race: With the exception of Crasher, every Go-Bot is now male.
  • Prequel: The whole story might be one to Transformers vs. G.I. Joe.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The laws governing Go-Bot and human interaction are referred to as the "Asimov laws."
    • The Go-Bots in New York were built in the Tonka building.
    • Issue 3 blends the plots of 2001: A Space Odyssey (something that's acknowledged In-Universe) and the first Planet of the Apes film.
      • It also unexpectedly references the classic toy Simon as the keypad to Spay-C's cell.
      • Issue 4 features the Renegades engaging in a hunt of devolved caveman-like humans very much like Taylor's first introduction to the Apes.
    • The hyperspace jump has more than a few shades to RDM's Battlestar Galactica reboot.
  • Status Quo Is God: The reason why Leader-1 practiced Brainwashing for the Greater Good. To keep his empire exactly the way it was.
  • Technology Marches On: In the first two issues, the Go-Bots use bullets. By issue 3, they've upgraded to energy weapons.
  • Time Skip: Thousands of years pass between issues 2 and 3.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: Issues 1 and 2 feature the Go-Bots declaring war on the human race. As a technician notes, humanity really had it coming.
  • Unknown Rival: Cy-Kill loathes Leader-1 viewing him as a usurper of his fate. Leader-1 views Cy-Kill as a yo-yo.
  • We Have Become Complacent: As one of the astronauts realizes, the Go-Bots became powerful enough to conquer a planet because humanity built them to do everything so that they wouldn't have to.
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